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By Ned Birkey, MSU Extension Educator Emeritus

A Twilight Field Crop Field Day will be held on Wednesday, June 23, 2021 at the Monroe County Community College (MCCC) Student Ag Farm.  MCCC is located at 1555 South Raisinville Road, Monroe, MI 48161.  The Student Ag Farm is just north of campus and persons should take the gravel driveway to the parking lot and the tent.  There will be signage at the site directing traffic.

This event will begin with a porkburger supper, “with all the trimmings” at 6:00pm to be followed by a walking tour and presentations of three MSU corn and soybean projects, ending at 8:30pm.  The event will be held rain or shine with a tent, tables and chairs and porta john and handwashing station on site.

This event is free of charge to all area farmers and others interested in agriculture and sponsored by the Agriculture Advisory Council, the Monroe County Farm Bureau, the Michigan Soybean Committee, the Monroe Conservation District and MCCC.  Reservations are requested for a meal count and can be made to the Monroe Conservation District by phone at 734-241-8540, Ext. 5.  The deadline for reservations is Monday, June 21, 2021.

Projects toured include an early planting versus late planting soybean project by Dr. Manni Singh, a cover crop and soybean nematode suppression project by Dr. George Bird and corn, soybean and cover crop nematode projects by Drs. Marisol Quintanilla and Sita Thapa.

Other projects at the Student Ag Farm in 2021 include; a TePee malting barley project by Independent Barley and Malts of Litchfield, Michigan, a Golden Harvest corn variety demonstration plot, and sunflower, ornamental corn and Mum fund raiser project by the Collegiate Farm Bureau FFA Student Ag Club.  Additionally, numerous fruit and vegetables planted will be donated to MCOP and the new Monroe Market operated by the Oaks of Righteousness Church.

Two pesticide re-certification credits, CCA credits and MAEAP Phase I credit will be requested.  As of June 3, all updated MCCC Covid safety protocols will be followed, which means that fully vaccinated persons no longer need to wear a mask and distancing is not required.  For more information, contact Ned Birkey at: [email protected] or 734-260-3442.



A Twilight Field Crop Field Day will be held on Wednesday, June 23, 2021 at the Monroe County Community College (MCCC) Student Ag Farm.

County News

By Ned Birkey, MSU Extension Educator Emeritus

A Twilight Field Crop Field Day will be held on Wednesday, June 23, 2021 at the Monroe County Community College (MCCC) Student Ag Farm.  MCCC is located at 1555 South Raisinville Road, Monroe, MI 48161.  The Student Ag Farm is just north of campus and persons should take the gravel driveway to the parking lot and the tent.  There will be signage at the site directing traffic.

This event will begin with a porkburger supper, “with all the trimmings” at 6:00pm to be followed by a walking tour and presentations of three MSU corn and soybean projects, ending at 8:30pm.  The event will be held rain or shine with a tent, tables and chairs and porta john and handwashing station on site.

This event is free of charge to all area farmers and others interested in agriculture and sponsored by the Agriculture Advisory Council, the Monroe County Farm Bureau, the Michigan Soybean Committee, the Monroe Conservation District and MCCC.  Reservations are requested for a meal count and can be made to the Monroe Conservation District by phone at 734-241-8540, Ext. 5.  The deadline for reservations is Monday, June 21, 2021.

Projects toured include an early planting versus late planting soybean project by Dr. Manni Singh, a cover crop and soybean nematode suppression project by Dr. George Bird and corn, soybean and cover crop nematode projects by Drs. Marisol Quintanilla and Sita Thapa.

Other projects at the Student Ag Farm in 2021 include; a TePee malting barley project by Independent Barley and Malts of Litchfield, Michigan, a Golden Harvest corn variety demonstration plot, and sunflower, ornamental corn and Mum fund raiser project by the Collegiate Farm Bureau FFA Student Ag Club.  Additionally, numerous fruit and vegetables planted will be donated to MCOP and the new Monroe Market operated by the Oaks of Righteousness Church.

Two pesticide re-certification credits, CCA credits and MAEAP Phase I credit will be requested.  As of June 3, all updated MCCC Covid safety protocols will be followed, which means that fully vaccinated persons no longer need to wear a mask and distancing is not required.  For more information, contact Ned Birkey at: [email protected] or 734-260-3442.



A Twilight Field Crop Field Day will be held on Wednesday, June 23, 2021 at the Monroe County Community College (MCCC) Student Ag Farm.

Monroe County Farm Bureau has again committed to providing three $750 scholarships to students from our community studying agriculture.  The Betty Bliss Scholarship, Dale Lynn Mason Scholarship, and Young Farmer Memorial Scholarship will be awarded this May and local students are encouraged to apply.

To qualify for these scholarships, students must be enrolled in post-secondary education pursuing a career related to agriculture.  This includes four-year universities, trade schools, community colleges, and vocational training which supports the agricultural industry, and current students in these programs are also eligible.  Farm Bureau membership is not a requirement for selection, but we always encourage membership in the Young Farmer Committee.  We hope that our scholarship winners will return to their community after completion of their education.

Application forms may be downloaded by clicking HERE .  Completed applications including a one-page essay on the topic, “Which two major issues will define the agricultural industry over the next five years, and how can farmers positively promote the industry as a response to those issues?” along with two letters of recommendation are due back to the County Farm Bureau office in Ida by the end of the day on May 7th.  Applicant interviews will not be required this year.  The Young Farmer Committee will select the winners at a special meeting on May 8th.

Winners of the scholarships will receive a check made payable to them and the school they are attending once their first semester’s transcripts are submitted which demonstrate proof of enrollment and grades.  Winners of a scholarship from previous years are also welcome to reapply, as long as their course of study remains connected to the field of agriculture.

Please contact the Monroe County Farm Bureau office at 734-269-3275 or [email protected] for more information.

Monroe County Farm Bureau has again committed to providing three $750 scholarships to students from our community studying agriculture.

Please CLICK HERE to view the Proposed Resolutions that will be presented at the Monroe County Farm Bureau Annual Meeting on September 17, 2020.

State News


Even with COVID restrictions lifting, a better-safe-than-sorry approach to children’s activities at the fair still makes good sense this year.

A: Each equate to approximately six feet of distance. While you might not be planning to line up livestock to remind fairgoers of appropriate distancing; restrictions and guidelines are everchanging.

Making small adjustments to children’s county fair activities should set up your county Farm Bureau Promotion & Education activities for success no matter the restrictions at the time of your events.

Please consider these general tips:

  • Plan for volunteers to individually hand out materials as opposed to help-yourself distribution of flyers, handouts, trinkets or craft supplies, etc.
  • Limit activities or displays where objects are handled by numerous individuals throughout the day to avoid cumbersome cleaning responsibilities.
  • Prepackage craft supplies or trinkets for children so one child or one family gets a bag of items.
  • Seek donations of small packages of crayons (MI Soybean Promotion Committee) to hand out with a coloring page instead of a bin of crayons to be shared by children at the fair.
  • Consider using painter’s tape or similar to mark off stations or work spaces for children at activity tables or picnic tables.
  • Avoid activities such as sawdust penny hunts, corn boxes, play areas with shared toys, craft supplies, etc.
  • Host individual make-and-take craft projects instead of games or activities that involve groups of children using shared materials. (See below.)
  • Avoid make-and-take activities involving food such as making butter or ice cream in a bag. Instead consider individually packaged food giveaways such as cheese sticks, small milk cartons or fruit.
  • Provide volunteers with cleaning wipes and hand sanitizer so all children sanitize hands before participation and all tables and materials are cleaned following activity.
  • Order safety posters from the MFB print shop to remind visitors of proper health and safety protocols.

Activity ideas:

Questions? Contact Amelia Miller or Katie Eisenberger

Making small adjustments to children’s county fair activities should set up your county Farm Bureau Promotion & Education activities for success no matter the restrictions at the time of your events.

The third class of Michigan Farm Bureau’s Academy for Political Leadership convenes for the first time later this month, beginning a pandemic-adjusted schedule that will continue through September.

COVID-19 restrictions led the group to put off meeting meet in person until a time when they can, hopefully, convene in person.

Eight participants are scheduled to meet in June, July, August and September:

Nadene Berthiaume grew up on a small farm in Genesee County, earned her education credentials at Michigan State and worked as an ag teacher and FFA advisor. She’s now district administrator of the Saginaw Conservation District, following several years as an ag-tech instructor and program director at Baker College of Owosso.

While raising her family Berthiaume is building two small businesses: a farm accounting service and a small horse farm. Her lifelong passion for agriculture informs her efforts as an advocate for agriculture, outdoor recreation and natural resource conservation.

Maria Carlin farms with her husband in Shiawassee County, raising cash crops near Owosso and running a pair of related ventures: d’Vine Wines and Maria’s Garden. She’s a graduate of MSU’s vet-tech program with degrees in microbiology and business administration; he’s a fifth-generation cash crop farmer and environmental engineer. Both entertain political aspirations.

Currently a member of the Shiawassee County Farm Bureau board of directors, Carlin represents District 5 on MFB’s state-level policy development committees and has take part in both MFB’s Lansing and Washington Legislative Seminars.


Logan Crumbaugh grew up on his family’s farm in Gratiot County, growing corn, soybeans, wheat and sugar beets. He earned his agribusiness management degree from Michigan State and through Farm Bureau events has developed a passion for political involvement, including an itch to someday seek an elected office.

Off the farm he enjoys homebrewing, riding ATVs and snowmobiles, and exploring Michigan with his wife Morgan.


Byron Fogarasi is the fourth-generation owner of his family's centennial farm in Arenac County near Sterling, raising cash crops, hay and beef cattle with his wife Robyn and their children, Ryder and Rose. Combining childhood lessons learned from his grandparents with formal education in mechanical engineering and business administration, Fogarasi is deeply committed to ensuring future generations can embrace the farming heritage his forbears made possible for him.

A member of Arenac County Farm Bureau’s executive committee, Fogarasi is already politically active as a township supervisor, taking an active role in policymaking to maintain his community’s agricultural legacy.


Loren King comes from St. Joseph County, where he serves on the count Farm Bureau board of directors and helps his family raise corn and soybeans. Off the farm he works with digital media for an agricultural startup serving farmers with digital media technology including photography, videography and drones. 

His Farm Bureau involvement has him hooked on developing solid policy and advocating for farm-friendly legislation. In 4-H and FFA, and as an MFB policy intern, King has developed and fed his passion agricultural policymaking, and personally lobbied lawmakers in advocating for measures that benefit American farmers.


Brad Lubbers farms near Hamilton in Allegan County with his parents, wife Konni and their children Thomas and Noelle. Together they raise hogs on a 200-sow farrow-to-finish farm, in addition to 900 acres of corn, soybeans and wheat.

An active member of the Allegan County Farm Bureau, Lubbers has a deep resume of involvement in every corner of the organization, from candidate evaluation and policy development to the Young Farmer program and serving on the county board of directors, including as county president.

Allan Robinette is a fifth-generation fruit grower near Grand Rapids, and a member of the Kent County Farm Bureau. His family operates a popular agritourism destination where Allan works behind the scenes, growing apples, sweet cherries and peaches.

Robeinette’s Apple Haus includes operate a year-round farm market, cider mill, bakery and winery.

Ed Scheffler comes from a third-generation farm in northeastern Lenawee County he shares with his wife Wendy and their children Faith and Austin. A member of the Lenawee County Farm Bureau board of directors, he farms alongside his father, raising about 150 acres soybeans, 100 acres of hay and 80 acres each of wheat and oats.

By day Scheffler is Lenawee County’s deputy drain commissioner, a position that informs his volunteer work with the River Raisin Watershed Council’s farmer group promoting water-quality practices and public outreach.

At their June kickoff meeting all new Academy participants will spend time getting acquainted with each other and the program itself.

MFB President Carl Bednarski will speak to the need for farmers to be active politically.

Participants will take part in training mass-media interviewing skills, social media strategy and campaign material design.

Dist. 88 State Representative Luke Meerman, a dairy farmer from Coopersville and active Farm Bureau member, will share what he’s learned from campaigning and serving constituents.

MFB Legal Counsel Andy Kok will speak to the role of the judiciary and State Legislative Counsel Rob Anderson staff will walk participants through the process of how legislation really becomes the law of the land.

The program continues with subsequent sessions in late June and mid-August, and concludes with a mid-September session in Washington, D.C. (tentative, depending on the status of pandemic precautions there.)

MFB’s Academy for Political Leadership is designed for Farm Bureau members interested in politics and government. Some participants aspire to public office themselves or seek to learn how to support office-holders, while others simply want to learn more about how government works.

The academy takes place every other year in non-election years. Contact your county Farm Bureau if you or someone you know is interested in taking part in a future class.

MFB staff contacts: Matt Kapp, 517-679-5883, and Melissa Palma, 517-323-6740


The third class of Michigan Farm Bureau’s Academy for Political Leadership convenes for the first time later this month, beginning a pandemic-adjusted schedule that will continue through September.


Need extra hands at your district-level events this summer? Reach out to your future members: high school and college students.

Two sweet wins right off the bat: Your county Farm Bureau grows its volunteer pool (surely on your long to-do list) AND the students you involve experience our grassroots process firsthand.

For ways to utilize high school and collegiate members, check out this huge infographic below (click here to see and download a full-size version).

For help connecting with these groups, contact Katie Eisenberger, MFB’s High School & Collegiate Programs Specialist.

Need extra hands at your district-level events this summer? Reach out to your future members: high school and college students.

Coming Events

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June2021
Saturday
19
2021 District 3 SUMMERFEST
301 Smith Rd
Fowlerville, MI,
This family-friendly outdoor event will offer carnival games, fair-food favorites, live music, and a fireworks show! This event is an opportunity for all of the regular members of Livingston, Oakland, Macomb, Monroe, Washtenaw and Wayne counties to come together for food and fun.  The event will begin with an optional policy development issue surfacing meeting at 5 PM. At this meeting, members have an opportunity to present any issues or topics for discussion. Michigan Farm Bureau will also provide an industry update. The remainder of the evening will be for food and festivities, with a firework show at nightfall!   Register by June 10 at forms.office.com/r/RQ1xa2zHRC or by calling your County FB Office.
June2021
Tuesday
22
Monroe June Board Meeting
8300 Ida West Road
Ida, MI,
The Monthly Meeting of the Board of Directors is generally held on the 4th Tuesday of the month at the County FB Office in Ida, unless otherwise indicated. Meeting Start Time: 8:00 PM.
June2021
Friday
25
1st Annual Membership Golf Outing
7980 Beck Rd
Ottawa Lake, MI
Join us at Whiteford Valley Golf Course on June 25, 2021 for our 1st Annual Membership Golf Outing to benefit the Lenawee and Monroe FFA's.  Registration begins at 8 am.  You can also call Terry Shoemaker at 517-265-2891 to pre-register your team and/or to become a sponsor.  Golfers: $65/per individual $260/per team Event Title Sponsor $200 Hole Sponsor $100/per each hole Lunch Sponsor  $50
July2021
Tuesday
27
Monroe July Board Meeting
3775 S Custer Rd
Monroe, MI,
The Monthly Meeting of the Board of Directors is generally held on the 4th Tuesday of the month.  The July board meeting is usually held at our Concession Building at the Monroe County Fairgrounds. Meeting Start Time: 7:00 PM.